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The 1st LTE-Hi Demo Completed: China’s 3.5G Band Planning having an influence throughout the world 2014-08-08

(Beijing, April 4th, By Qi Ming)

On April 3rd the Datang Telecom Technology & Industry Group hosted the LTE-Hi Standard, Technology and Industry Development Seminar in Beijing. During the seminar Datang presented a LTE-Hi integrated service demonstration using industry-first 3.5GHz band and based on a commercial-oriented compacted base station, including dynamic TDD and U/C separation, as well as LTE-Hi based HD video conferencing.

With the developing global mobile market and expanding user base, mobile data traffic is soaring, however indoor and hotspot scenarios accounting for 70-80% of total mobile business. Characteristically, indoor mobile use involving macro cell equipment comes at a high cost, which undermines the requirements of network operators to provide a fast, low-cost indoor data service - this is the background against which LTE-Hi evolved.

LTE-Hi (LTE Hotspot/indoor) is a technology that accommodates hotspot and indoor coverage with small LTE base stations. This technology was developed by 3GPP, an international standards organization, in its 2012 Release 12 standardization package. LTE-Hi was designed for hotspot coverage, and it is LTE’s evolution technology, which comes with higher speed, lower cost, higher frequency efficiency, and objective controllability. Currently, operators and equipment manufacturers are driving the application of LTE-Hi.

Standardization + Patents

As a result of the consistent growth of the TDD industry chain, WiMAX and TDD LTE, previously competitors to each other, have now merged. Largely due to the vigorous efforts of the three leading TD-LTE network operators, the TD-LTE industry development whitepaper released by the TD Industry Alliance predicts that TD-LTE base stations will account for about 45% of all 4G base stations in the world by the end of 2014, and the figure for TD-LTE users will be 30%.

Observing this trend, operators attach great importance to indoor and hotspot TD-LTE coverage. In 2010, Datang Telecom and other Chinese providers took the lead in the enhancement of LTE hotspot based needs and technologies. Wang Zhiqin, director of the Communication Standards Research Institute of the China Academy of Telecommunication Research of MIIT reports that from early 2011 to early 2012, LTE-Hi technology research was undertaken, leading to a consensus on the LTE-based hotspot enhancement technology; research into and testing of 3.5GHz frequency spectrum coexistence was also undertaken.

Wang said, “Indoor and outdoor hotspots are key in 3GPP R12 research. LTE-Hi includes many specialties in the 3GPP R12 phase and will go through a long-term evolution. China has two particular specialties - small cell and dynamic TDD - and Huawei and Datang are respectively responsible for these.”

Chen Shanzhi, vice President of the Datang Telecom Group, said that when it comes to LTE-Hi technological standards, Datang Telecom, the key organization responsible for 3GPP R12, leads the standardization research into dynamic TDD features and is very much involved in research and standardization of U/C separation, cell fast switch and fast identification, 256QAM, and so on. Great progress has been made in high-density networking research which has laid the groundwork for scale networking.

“As to its contribution to industrialization, after more than three years of focused effort, the Datang Telecom Group now has the ability to provide LTE-Hi end-to-end solutions. It has succeeded in developing a small LTE-Hi base station engineering prototype which supports 3.5GHz frequency band, wide bandwidth, fast rate, low energy consumption,, and a LTE-Hi terminal prototype based on its own independently developed TD-LTE chip. Currently, the group is able to support preliminary LTE-Hi technology testing and business demonstrations.”

In accordance with the 3GPP plan, the standardization work will be concluded this September. “LTE-Hi was first mooted by China. In terms of R12, it is arguable that China is at the forefront. The Datang Telecom Group put in a lot of effort even before the standardization work commenced, and it has over 100 patent applications pending. To date, the group has more than 16,000 patents, all in the TDD and IC fields.” said Wang Yingmin, chief engineer of Datang Telecom Group.

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